American Legislative Exchange Council

American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC)

Background

The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) is an organization designed to link state legislators with corporations and create templates for state legislation. Some corporations ALEC has worked with include ExxonMobil, Koch Industries, Peabody Energy, and Reynolds Tobacco. [1][77], [78]

ALEC describes its mission as to “advance limited government, free markets, and federalism at the state level through a nonpartisan public-private partnership of America’s state legislators, members of the private sector and the general public.” [2]

An investigation by the Center for Media and Democracy (CMD), hosted at ALECExposed.org, offers the following description of the organization: 

ALEC is not a lobby; it is not a front group. It is much more powerful than that. Through ALEC, behind closed doors, corporations hand state legislators the changes to the law they desire that directly benefit their bottom line. Along with legislators, corporations have membership in ALEC. Corporations sit on all nine ALEC task forces and vote with legislators to approve 'model' bills.

They have their own corporate governing board which meets jointly with the legislative board. (ALEC says that corporations do not vote on the board.) Corporations fund almost all of ALEC's operations. Participating legislators, overwhelmingly conservative Republicans, then bring those proposals home and introduce them in statehouses across the land as their own brilliant ideas and important public policy innovations—without disclosing that corporations crafted and voted on the bills.” [1]

ALEC was initially formed in September, 1973 by a group of state legislators including Henry Hyde, Paul Weyrich, and Lou Barnett, among others. Weyrich helped found the Heritage Foundation in the same year, and also went on to found a range of other conservative think tanks including the Free Congress Foundation. [80], [84]

According to a former ALEC task force head Dennis Bartlett, members join “for the purpose of having a seat at the table. That’s just what we do, that’s the service we offer.” He added that “The organization is supported by money from the corporate sector, and, by paying to be members, corporations are allowed the opportunity to sit down at the table and discuss the issues that they have an interest in.” [81]

ALEC is closely related to the State Policy Network (SPN), CMD's PR Watch reported, describing SPN as an ALEC “sister organization.” The predecessor to SPN, the Madison Group, was introduced by ALEC in the 1980s through the Heritage Foundation, where ALEC was also housed. SPN was formally created in 1992 as an “umbrella organization” of “mini-Heritage Foundations” in the states, PR Watch reported. [79]

ALEC maintains ”Task Forces” in the following areas: [3]

  • Civil Justice
  • Commerce, Insurance, and Economic Development
  • Communications and Technology
  • Education and Workforce Development
  • Energy, Environment and Agriculture
  • Federalism and International Relations
  • Health and Human Services
  • Justice Performance Project
  • Tax and Fiscal Policy
  • *Public Safety and Elections task force (since disbanded[4]

ALEC Bills

A Brookings Institution study looked at a sample of 132 ALEC model bills that were introduced during the 2012 legislative season. Republicans sponsored over 90 percent of them. Their study found that the ALEC bills’ likelihood of passing was “strikingly high compared to the dismal rate at which all other bills are enacted into law.” [5]

In 2013, the CMD found at least 77 ALEC bills that year opposing renewable energy standards, supporting fracking and the controversial Keystone XL pipeline, or otherwise undermining environmental laws. [54]

ALEC also has a history of working with tobacco companies, and has helped provide tobacco-industry representatives face-to-face access to federal elected officials. [6]

Stance on Climate Change

January, 2017

The following is taken from ALEC's model bill for “Energy Principles,” introduced January 1, 2002 and last amended January 12, 2017. [8] , [76]

Global Climate Change is Inevitable. Climate change is a historical phenomenon and the debate will continue on the significance of natural and anthropogenic contributions. ALEC will continue to monitor the issue and support the use of sound science. Regardless, the economy is becoming more energy efficient. Each year we emit less carbon dioxide per dollar of economic output. In fact, carbon dioxide emissions per dollar of GDP declined 41.3 percent between 1981 and 2005. This impressive improvement has taken place without greenhouse gas emissions regulations or taxes.

In an official position statement on renewables and climate change, ALEC attempts to counter the claim that “ALEC is a 'climate denier' organization”: [7]

“The EEA Task Force understands all discussions about energy policy are inextricably linked with discussions about climate and man’s impact on the planet. In regard to climate change, the Task Force has adopted the following language in ALEC’s Energy Principles, one of the Task Force’s guiding documents:

“Climate change is a historical phenomenon and the debate will continue on the significance of natural and anthropogenic contributions. ALEC will continue to monitor the issue and support the use of sound science to guide policy, but ALEC will also incorporate economic and political realism. Unilateral efforts by the United States or regions within the United States will not significantly decrease carbon emissions globally, and international efforts to decrease emissions have proven politically infeasible and unenforceable. Policymakers in most cases are not willing to inflict economic harm on their citizens with no real benefit. ALEC discourages impractical visionary goals that ignore economic reality, and that will not be met without serious consequences for worldwide standard of living.

“Further recognizing the fact that “[h]uman activity has and will continue to alter the atmosphere of the planet” and that “[s]uch activity may lead to demonstrable changes in climate, including a warming of the planetary mean temperature,” ALEC developed the Interstate Research Commission on Climactic Change Act in the mid-1990s. This policy was designed to address the scientific and economic aspects of the issue of climate change through the development of a multistate research commission with a strong emphasis on basic and applied research.

ALEC has also been accused of promoting model policy that advocates for the teaching of “climate denial” in schools. The model Environmental Literacy Improvement Act seeks to ensure schools use sound science and provide for balanced discussion on issues pertaining to the environment and climate change. It does not deny climate change or direct educators to teach the denial of climate change.” [7]

2015

After Google parted ways with ALEC due to its inaction on climate change, the group refuted allegations that it denies climate change, saying: “ALEC recognizes that climate change is an important issue,” and “no ALEC model policy denies climate change.” [10], [11]

January 21, 2004

Sandy Liddy Bourne, representing ALEC, said in 2004: “Carbon dioxide, the inescapable by-product of burning fossil fuels, is beneficial to plant and human life alike. The effort to regulate it as a greenhouse gas is an attempt to tax energy.” [9]

ALEC Conferences

ALEC hosts conferences three times a year where they frequently invite prominent climate change skeptics. Here are a few sample statements made at ALEC conferences or by ALEC board members highlighted by AlecClimateChangeDenial.org, a joint project of the Centre for Media and Democracy, Forecast the Facts, and the Energy and Public Policy Institute: [48]

  • Joe Bast: “There is no scientific consensus on the human role in climate change.” ALEC Annual Meeting, Dallas, Texas August, 2014

  • Craig Idso:CO2 is not a pollutant. It is a benefit. It is the very elixir of life.” ALEC Conference, December 2014 

  • Marc Morano: “The idea that there is a “scientific consensus” [on climate change] does not hold up.” ALEC Annual Meeting, Dallas, Texas August, 2014

  • Christopher Monckton: “The science [of climate change] is bad, the consensus is wrong.” ALEC Annual Meeting, Atlanta, Georgia July, 2009

  • Lisa Nelson (ALEC CEO): Asked if she accepts CO2 emissions are the primary driver of climate change: “I don't know the science on that.” Interview with National Journal, published October 2, 2014.

  • Phil King (ALEC Board member): “I think the global warming theory is bad science.” TX House of Representatives Website, January, 2007.

  • John Piscopo (ALEC Board member): “The public has been hoodwinked…I have serious doubts about whether [climate change] is man made.” Connecticut Post, March, 2010.

Funding

The Centre for Media and Democracy (CMD) notes that since the 2011 launch of the website ALECExposed.org, many corporations have left and publicly distanced themselves from ALEC, including General Motors, Walgreens, Johnson & Johnson, Wal-Mart, Amazon, McDonald’s, Coca-Cola, and GE.  [4]

Since CMD launched their ALEC Exposed investigation in 2011, 108 corporations and 19 non-profits have left ALEC, including BP, Shell, Visa, Coca-Cola, Microsoft, McDonald's, and Google (now Alphabet). Documents obtained by CMD found that ALEC had received at least $504,700 from Koch Industries between 1995 and 1998, adding up to nearly $1 million from Koch-Controlled Foundations between 1998 and 2012. CMD additionally found that the tobacco conglomerate Philip Morris/Altria gave ALEC $1,426,700 between 1995 and 2010. [56], [61]

While ALEC does not publicly disclose its funding sources, public 990 records and data collected by the Conservative Transparency project reveal some of its funding sources. Note that not all of the below funding values have been verified by DeSmogBlog for accuracy.

See the attached spreadsheet for additional information on ALEC funding by year (.xlsx). [57]

ALEC as Recipient

Donor Total
Allegheny Foundation $1,970,000
Exxon Mobil $1,534,700
Searle Freedom Trust $1,524,500
PhRMA $1,257,717
Charles G. Koch Charitable Foundation $1,149,712
The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation $773,000
Claude R. Lambe Charitable Foundation $720,000
Castle Rock Foundation $650,000
Donors Capital Fund $564,000
Jaquelin Hume Foundation $270,000
Friedman Foundation For Educational Choice $248,000
John M. Olin Foundation $215,000
JM Foundation $135,000
DonorsTrust $131,300
American Petroleum Institute $88,000
The Randolph Foundation $75,000
The Samuel Roberts Noble Foundation $75,000
Edison Electric Institute $63,000
Armstrong Foundation $62,500
CIGNA Foundation $55,000
Scaife Family Foundation $50,000
The Roe Foundation $30,500
The Vernon K. Krieble Foundation $28,500
eBay $12,000
MyWireless.org $10,000
The Shelby Cullom Davis Foundation $7,000
Joyce and Donald Rumsfeld Foundation $7,000
American Chemistry Council $2,500
Grand Total $11,708,929

ALEC as Donor

State Policy Network $15,000
2012 $10,000
2013 $5,000
DonorsTrust
2013 $12,500
Grand Total $27,500

ExxonMobil Funding

According to data from Greenpeace's ExxonSecrets, ALEC has received $1,619,700 from ExxonMobil since 1998[12]

Koch Funding

Greenpeace investigations ALEC received a grand total of $1,882,690 from Koch-related foundations between 1997 and 2015[13]

*Original tax forms prior to 1997 are no longer available for verification. If you include a $60,000 donation from 1993, the grand total Koch Funding jumps to $1,942,690 in Koch funding from 1993 to 2015.

Year Charles Koch Foundation Charles Koch Institute Claude R. Lambe Charitable Foundation Grand Total
1993* $60,000 $60,000
1997 $30,000 $30,000 $60,000
1998 $70,000 $70,000
1999 $13,000 $13,000
2000 $85,000 $85,000
2001 $75,000 $75,000
2002 $30,000 $30,000
2007 $75,000 $75,000
2009 $75,858 $125,000 $200,858
2010 $100,000 $100,000
2011 $150,000 $150,000
2012 $71,100 $150,000 $221,100
2014 $280,640 $35,889 $316,529
2015 $449,114 $37,089 $486,203
Grand Total $1,149,712 $72,978 $720,000 $1,942,690

*Original tax forms for data before 1997 is not available for verification.

Alpha Natural Resources Creditor

Alpha Natural Resources, one of the largest coal companies in the U.S., filed for bankruptcy in August of 2015. The American Legislative Exchange Council was among the Alpha Natural Resources creditors revealed in the bankruptcy documents. Others included organizations active in climate change denial such as the Heartland Institute, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and the Energy & Environmental Legal Institute (E&E Legal). [60]

Nonprofit Status

While ALEC is registered as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit with the IRS, making donations tax-deductible, Common Cause, Clergy Voice, the Voters Legislative Transparency Project, and the Center for Media and Democracy/Progressive Inc. (CMD) have alleged that ALEC repeatedly violated federal law and should have its nonprofit status revoked. [56]

In 2013, ALEC began adding a disclaimer to the bottom of all its documents stating: “Because this is an internal ALEC document, ALEC believes it is not subject to disclosure under any state Freedom of Information or Public Records Act,” which CMD speculated could be an attempt to sidestep state public records laws. [4]

ALEC dropped this disclaimer after CMD's successful open records lawsuit against its national board member and Wisconsin State Senator Leah Vukmir.  [55]

“The case shows that legislators who deny open records requests and seek refuge behind improbable claims of immunity will be held accountable by the public, the media and the legal system,” said Brendan Fischer, General Counsel for the Center for Media and Democracy.

990 Forms

Key People

Board Members

Name 2011 2012[22] 2015[14] 2016[69] 2017 2018 Description
David Frizzell Y Y Y Y Y Y
Jim Buck Y Y Y Y Y Y
John Piscopo Y Y Y Y Y Y
Linda Upmeyer Y Y Y Y Y Y
Susan Wagle Y Y Y Y Y Y
Alan Clemmons Y Y Y Y
Andre E. Cushing, III Y Y Y Y
Bill Seitz Y Y Y Y
Dawn Pettengill Y Y Y Y
Jason Saine Y Y Y Y National Chair
Joel C. Anderson Y Y Y Y
Leah Vukmir Y Y Y Y
Phil King Y Y Y Y
Philip Gunn Y Y Y Y
Wayne Niederhauser Y Y Y Y
Brian Kelsey Y Y
David Reis Y Y
Gary Daniels Y Y
Jim Smith Y Y
Kathy Byron Y Y
Bill Howell Y Y Y Y Y
Harold Brubaker Y Y Y Y Y
Noble Ellington Y Y Y Y Y
Tom Craddick Y Y Y Y Y
Debbie Lesko Y
Curry Todd Y Y Y Y Tennessee House
Ray Merrick Y Y Y Y Kansas House
Bill L. Cadman Y Y Colorado Senate
Blair Thoreson Y Y North Dakota House
Gary Banz Y Y Oklahoma House of Representatives
Judson Hill Y Y Georgia Senate
Norine Kasperik Y Y Wyoming House
Bobby Hogue Y Chair Emeritus (Arkansas)
Dolores Mertz Y Chair Emeritus (Iowa)
Joe Harrison Y Board Member (Louisiana)
Steve Faris Y Chair Emeritus (Arkansas)
Billy Hewes III Y Y
Chip Rogers Y Y
Curt Bramble Y Y
Dean Rhoads Y Y
Jim Ellington Y Y
Kent Cravens Y Y
Liston Barfield Y Y Secretary.
Michael Lamoureux Y Y
Owen Johnson Y Y
Steve McDaniel Y Y
William Seitz Y Y
Fred Steen Y
Bill Raggio Y
Yvette Herrell Y Y

Board of Scholars

Name 2011 2012[23 2015[16] 2016[69] 2017 2018 Description
Arthur B. Laffer Y Y Y Y Y Y Founder and chairman of Laffer Associates. Co-chair of the policy council for the Free Enterprise Fund (FEF)
Bob Williams Y Y Y Y Y Y State Budget Solutions.  Founder and Senior Fellow, Evergreen Freedom Foundation
Richard Vedder Y Y Y Y Y Y Ohio University
Victor Schwartz Y Y Y Y Y Y Shook, Hardy & Bacon LLP
Rob Natelson Y Y Y Senior fellow, Independence Institute.
Stephen Moore Y Y Senior economics writer, The Wall Street Journal. Past founder and president of the Club for Growth.
Kay Coles James Y

Private Enterprise Advisory Council

Company Represented & Council Member 2011 2012[25] 2015[17] 2016[69 2017 2018
Altria Client Services
Daniel Smith Y Y Y Y Y
Toby Spangler Y
American Bail Coalition
William Carmichael Y Y Y Y Y Y
Asian American Hotel Owners Association
Chip Rogers Y Y Y Y
AT&T
Bill Leahy Y Y Y Y Y
Jim Epperson, Jr Y
Automotive Trade Association Executives
Jennifer Colman Y Y
Bayer Corporation
Sandra Oliver Y Y
Centerpoint360
W. Preston Baldwin Y Y
Coca-Cola
Gene Rackley Y
Matt Echols Y
DIAGEO
Kenneth Lane Y Y Y Y
Energy Future Holdings
Sano Blocker Y Y Y Y Y
ExxonMobil 
Cynthia Bergman Y Y Y
Ken Freeman Y
Kevin Murphy Y
Randy Smith Y
GlaxoSmithKline
John Del Giorno Y Y
Guarantee Trust Life Insurance Company
Marianne Eterno Y Y Y Y
Intuit, Inc.
Bernie McKay Y
Johnson & Johnson
Don Bohn Y Y
K12 Inc.
Don Lee Y Y Y Y
Kraft Foods, Inc.
Derek Crawford Y Y
National Federation of Independent Business
Gary Selvy Y
Steve Woods Y Y Y
NetChoice
Steve DelBianco Y Y Y Y
Peabody Energy
Kelly Mader Y Y Y Y
Michael Blank Y Y Y
Pfizer Inc.
Josh Brown Y Y Y Y
Michael Hubert Y
Robert Jones Y
PhRMA
Jeff Bond Y Y Y Y Y
Scott LaGanga Y
Reed Elsevier, Inc.
Teresa Jennings Y Y
Reynolds American Inc.
David Powers Y Y
Salt River Project
Russell Smoldon Y Y
State Budget Solutions
Bob Williams Y Y Y Y
State Farm Insurance Companies
Roland Spies Y Y Y Y Y Y
U.S. Chamber of Commerce
Rob Engstrom Y
UPS
Mike Kiely Y Y
Pat Thomas Y Y Y
Richard McArdle Y
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
Maggie Sans Y Y
Koch Industries
Michael Morgan Y Y Y Y Y Y
Americans for Prosperity
Frayda Levin Y Y Y
Florida Constitution Revision Commission
Marva Johnson Y
Heritage Foundation
Stephen Moore Y Y Y Y
Other
Jerry Watson Y Y
Keith Smith Y

Staff

Name 2011 2012[24] 2015 2016[70] 2017 2018 Description
Amy Kjose Anderson Y Y Y Y Y Y Director, Civil Justice Task Force
Jonathan Williams Y Y Y Y Y Y Vice President, Center for State Fiscal Reform
Karla Jones Y Y Y Y Y Y Director, International Relations and Federalism Task Force
Michael Bowman Y Y Y Y Y Y Vice President, Policy
Genneya Briscoe Y Y Y Y Y Director of Employee Relations, Finance and Administration
Jose Fernandez Y Y Y Y Y Office Manager
Lisa Bowen Y Y Y Y Y Vice President, Finance and Administration
Ashley Varner Y Y Y Y Senior Director, Strategic Communications
Bartlett Cleland Y Y Y Y Vice President, Center for Innovation and Technology
Bill Meierling Y Y Y Y Vice President, Public Affairs
Christine Phipps Y Y Y Y Director, Art and Creative
Courtney Cook Y Y Y Y Director, Events
Jeff Lambert Y Y Y Y Vice President, Member Relations
Jon Russell Y Y Y Y Director, American City County Exchange
Jonathon Hauenschild Y Y Y Y Director, Communications and Technology Task Force
Lisa B. Nelson Y Y Y Y Chief Executive Officer. Former lobbyist for VISA and AOL Time Warner. Also worked for Newt Gingrich and GOPAC.  [20], [21]
Marie Vulaj Y Y Y Y Senior Director, Membership and Development
Bob Williams Y Y Y
Inez Feltscher Stepman Y Y Y Director, Education and Workforce Development Task Force
Lacey White Y Y Y Policy Manager
Ronald J. Lampard Y Y Y Director, Criminal Justice Task Force
Wes Fisher Y Y Y Manager, Membership and Development
Christine Smith Y Y Manager, Center for State Fiscal Reform
Elliot Young Y Y Research Analyst, Center for State Fiscal Reform
Jason Bethke Y Y Salesforce Administrator and Developer
Joel Griffith Y Y Director, Tax and Fiscal Policy Task Force
Mason Hunt Y Y Coordinator, Events
Robert Ordway Y Y Director, Commerce, Insurance and Economic Development Task Force
Sarah Spaulding Y Y Executive Assistant to the CEO
Shelby Emmett Y Y Director, Center to Protect Free Speech
Thurston Powers Y Y Legislative Analyst, Center for State Fiscal Reform
Tom McLaughlin Y Y Project Coordinator, Public Affairs
Victoria Eberlein Y Y Manager, Corporate and Nonprofit Relations
Anna Tarnawski Y Director
Brooklyn Roberts Y Director, Health and Human Services Task Force
Grant Kidwell Y Director, Energy, Environment and Agriculture Task Force
Joe Goetz Y Director, Development
Matthew Lipina Y Coordinator, Development
Mike Slabinski Y Legislative Analyst
Nicole Murphy Y Coordinator, Public Affairs
Daniel Turner Y Y Y Research Analyst, Center to Protect Free Speech
Mia Heck Y Y Director, Health and Human Services Task Force
Alyssa Hackbarth Y Manager, Public Affairs and Digital Strategy
Caden G. Rosenbaum Y Accountant
Erica York Y Legislative Analyst
Jay Hamilton Y Public Affairs & Media Relations
Sarah Hunt Y Director, Center for Innovation and Technology
Kati Siconolfi Y Y Y Y Legislative Manager, Center for State Fiscal Reform
Ben Wilterdink Y Y Director, Commerce, Insurance and Economic Development
Brian Hawkins Y Y Policy Coordinator
John Eick Y Y Director, Energy, Environment, and Agriculture Task Force
Laurel Buckley Y Y Director, Development
Rek LeCounte Y Y Manager, Digital Media
Shana Sally Y Y Coordinator, Media and Public Affairs
Spencer Chretien Y Y Coordinator, Membership
Theodore Lafferty Y Y Legal Research Analyst, Tax and Fiscal Policy
Joe Horvath Y Analyst, Tax and Fiscal Policy
Molly Drenkard Y Director, Media Relations and Public Affairs
Montana Hyde Y Executive Assistant, Office of the CEO
Nathan Brinkman Y Communications Coordinator, Center for State Fiscal Reform
Michael Hough Y Y Y Director, Task Force on Commerce, Insurance and Economic Development and Justice Performance Project
Seth Cooper Y Y Y Amicus Counsel
Alex McGee Y Development Coordinator
Jimmy Wall Y Executive Assistant to the CEO
Lindsay Russell Y Director, Task Force on Education
Molly Fuhs Y Director, Media and Public Relations
Sarah McManamon Y Director, Events
William Freeland Y Research Analyst, Task Force on Tax and Fiscal Policy
Bryan Weynand Y Y Legislative Analyst, Civil Justice & Energy, Environment, and Agriculture Task Forces.
Christie Herrera Y Y Director, Health and Human Services Task Force.
Courtney O'Brien Y Y Director, Commerce, Insurance, and Economic Development & Public Safety and Elections Task Forces.
David Myslinski Y Y Director, Education Task Force.
John Stephenson Y Y Director, Telecommunications and Information Technology Task Force.
Ron Scheberle Y Y Executive Director since January, 2010.
Stephanie Linn Y Y Policy and Intern Manager.
Cara Sullivan Y Legislative Analyst, Public Safety and Elections Task Force.
Christine Harbin Y Research Manager, Tax and Fiscal Policy Task Force.
Kailee Tkacz Y Research Analyst, Tax and Fiscal Policy Task Force.
Meaghan Archer Y Research Analyst, Tax and Fiscal Policy Task Force.
Sean Riley Y Legislative Analyst, Health and Human Services Task Force.
Todd Wynn Y Director, Energy, Environment and Agriculture Task Force.
Briana Mulder Y Board Liaison and Donor Relations Coordinator
Chaz Cirame Y Senior Director, Membership and Development
Clint Woods Y Director, Energy, Environment, and Agriculture Task Force
Jonathan Moody Y Director, Donor Relations
Kaitlyn Buss Y Web and New Media Manager 
Laura Elliott Y Director of State Programs
Monica Mastracco Y Legislative Assistant, Education & Health and Human Services Task Forces
Ngan Nguyen Y Legislative Study, Registration Account Specialist
Raegan Weber Y Senior Director, Public Affairs 
Rob Shrum Y Director, Corporate and NonProfit Relations

Other People (2004)

Media Coverage on ALEC

May 21 2015 edition of WXIA-TV's 11 Alive News Tonight

11 Alive investigators examined ALEC's status as a nonprofit versus what former a ALEC member describes as a “corporate bill mill.” Video below. [46], [47]

United States of ALEC — A Viewers Guide (June, 2014)

The Moyers and Company television program aired on public television stations, relying heavily on research by the Center for Media and Democracy's ALEC Exposed project, as well as first-hand interviews. [49], [50]

Video below. (View transcript here). 

United States of ALEC: A Follow-Up from BillMoyers.com on Vimeo.

Actions

July 18, 2018

ALEC Action, represented by Lisa B. Nelson, was among signatories of a letter supporting an anti-carbon tax resolution from House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) and Rep. David McKinley (R-W.Va. [93]

“We oppose any carbon tax. We oppose a carbon tax because it would lead to less income and fewer jobs for American families,” the letter read. “We support the House Concurrent Resolution in opposition to a job-killing carbon tax and urge members to co-sponsor and support this effort.” [93]

The resolution would call a carbon tax “detrimental to the United States economy.”E&E News reported it was similar to a measure that passed the House in 2016. Rep. Carlos Curbelo of Florida, co-chairman of the Climate Solutions Caucus, said he would not vote for the resolution. [94]

“Protecting our environment and economic growth are not mutually exclusive,” he said in a statement. “The resolution presents a false choice.” [94]

The Citizens' Climate Lobby (CCL) issued a point-by-point rebuttal of the measure when it was first introduced. [95]

July 12, 2018

Oil giant ExxonMobil would not be renewing its membership in ALEC due to disagreement over climate change policy, Bloomberg reported. Late in 2017, Exxon, Chevron, and Honywell International inc. were among companies that objected to ALEC's push for the Environmental Protection Agency to rescind climate change legislation from the Obama administration. [91]

The measure had been supported by the Heartland Institute, as well as the Competitive Enterprise Institute and the James Madison Institute among others. [92]

“It was corporate blackmail,” Steve Milloy said of the corporate departures. Milloy is a policy advisor to the Heartland Institute. “They basically said, ‘We’re going to leave.’”

April 23, 2018

The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), represented by Lisa B. Nelson, was among 22 groups signed on to an open letter asking President Trump to ignore recent criticism of EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt. [89]

In a speech to the U.S. Senate, a group of Democratic senators identified the organizations as front groups for the Koch Brothers and other wealthy donors, nicknamed the “Web of Deceit.” The senators outlined how, in addition to funding from the Koch network, many of the groups use untraceable “dark money” funneled through groups like Donors Capital Fund and Donors Trust to influence legislation, particularly with regards to climate and pollution.

Senator Whitehouse outlined it as “a web of deceit conceived and bankrolled by the Koch brothers and other self-interested billionaires to advocate for very selfish and unpatriotic policies.” Whitehouse added: “This web of deceit has infiltrated and populated the Trump administration, and it is swamping the interests of everyday Americans. [90]

The full list of pro-Pruitt signatories and their respective organizations is as follows:

September 21, 2017

The Center for Media and Democracy's PR Watch reported, using information from a newly available database of corporate violations data titled “Violations Tracker,” that eight ALEC member companies had been penalized with more than $6.2 billion in federal fines due to misconduct or federal crimes since 2000. The companies examined pay to sit on the “Private Enterprise Advisory Council” of ALEC. Members leading in penalties included: [87]

Member Total Fines
Pfizer $4.350 billion
Exxon Mobil $715 million
Koch Industries $657 million
AT&T $421 million
United Parcel Service $35 million
Diageo $17 million
Peabody Energy $16 million
Altria $7 million

July 19-21, 2017

ALEC hosed a meeting in Denver featuring Republican legislators and representatives from corporate groups including Koch Industries, ExxonMobil, K12 Inc., Peabody Energy, and PhRMACMD reported that among those present included Secretary Betsy DeVos, Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta, Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke, Newt Gingrich, and other “Trump loyalists.” [88]

One of the items on the agenda was a model bill to repeal the 17th Amendment. The “Draft Resolution Recommending Constitutional Amendment Restoring Election Of U.S. Senators To The Legislatures Of The Sovereign States” would be debated by ALEC's Federalism and International Relations Task Force[88]

CMD notes that repeal of the 17th amendment, which established the popular election of United States Senators in 1913, would allow Republicans to take 17 U.S. Senate seats from Democrats with state legislatures given the right to pick Senators. [88]

Part of the resolution excerpted below:

“Section 1. The seventeenth article of amendment to the Constitution of the United States is hereby repealed.

“Section 2. Senators shall be elected exclusively by the State legislature, upon a majority vote of legislators present and voting in a joint session. If a vacancy shall exist for more than one hundred-eighty days, then the Governor shall appoint the Senator to serve the remainder of the vacant term. This procedure may not be modified by state initiative or referendum.” [88]

February 22 - 25, 2017

ALEC was a Supporting Sponsor of the 2017 Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), among a range of other conservative and pro-industry groups. [75]

July 29, 2016

As reported by Greenpeace, ALEC's 2016 annual meeting in Indianapolis, Indiana attracted a range of corporate sponsors including companies like ExxonMobil, Koch Industries, and Peabody Energy. The Center for Media and Democracy (CMD) reported that ExxonMobil was a top sponsor at the meeting, alongside the State Policy Network (SPN), Texas Public Policy Foundation (TPPF), and others. View the sponsors list here. [85], [86]

ALEC Indianapolis 2016 sponsors

ALEC Indianapolis 2016 sponsors, via Greenpeace

Greenpeace noted that Americans for Prosperity, a “Director-Level” sponsor, as well as exhibitors including The Charles Koch Institute, The Heritage Foundation, The Heartland Institute, and the Mercatus Center were all members of the State Policy Network (SPN), which was itself a “Chair-Level” sponsor. Each of the SPN groups represented at the conference had received support from Koch-controlled foundations.[85]

July 12, 2016

The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), represented by Lisa B. Nelson, was among 22 groups represented in a “Coalition” open letter pushing back against what the Heartland Institute describes as an “affront to free speech.” The groups are responding to the recent Web of Denial Resolution brought up in the Senate, calling out fossil fuel industry-funded groups denying climate change. [71]

According to the Climate Investigations Center, all but one of the open letter's signatory organizations have taken money (totalling at least $92 million since 1997) from the “climate denial web” including Koch Brothers' various foundations, ExxonMobil, and two “Dark Money” organizations, Donors Trust and Donors Capital Fund. [74]

Championed by Senators Whitehouse, Markey, Schatz, Boxer, Merkley, Warren, Sanders, and Franken, the resolution condemns what they are calling the #WebOfDenial — “interconnected groups – funded by the Koch brothers, major fossil fuel companies like ExxonMobil and Peabody Coal, identity-scrubbing groups like Donors Trust and Donors Capital, and their allies – developed and executed a massive campaign to deceive the public about climate change to halt climate action and protect their bottom lines.” [72]

The open letter addresses the senators, calling them “tyrants”: 

“We hear you. Your threat is clear: There is a heavy and inconvenient cost to disagreeing with you. Calls for debate will be met with political retribution. That’s called tyranny. And, we reject it.” [73]

The full list of signatories and their respective organizations is as follows:

June 13, 2016

The Center for Media and Democracy (CMD/PRWatch) reports the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) was named as a creditor in Peabody Energy's recent bankruptcy filings.  Additionally, the documents list funding a number of ALEC events including the following: [63]

  • ALEC Arkansas State Scholarship Fund
  • ALEC Colorado State Scholarship Fund
  • ALEC Illinois State Scholarship Fund
  • ALEC Indiana State Scholarship Fund
  • ALEC Missouri State Scholarship Fund
  • ALEC Montana State Scholarship Fund
  • ALEC New Mexico State Scholarship Fund
  • ALEC Scholarship Fund-Arizona
  • ALEC Texas State Scholarship
  • ALEC Wyoming Scholarship Fund
  • ALEC-MO Night

While the available bankruptcy documents do not list the scale or dates of funding, they outline Peabody Energy's financial ties to a large network of groups promoting climate change denial. [64]

Prominent individuals appearing in the documents include climate deniers Willie SoonRichard LindzenRoy Spencer and Richard Berman. The long list of organizations also includes groups such as Americans for ProsperityAmerican Legislative Exchange CouncilCFACTInstitute for Energy ResearchState Policy Network, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and dozens more. [65]

The Guardian also analysed and reported on the Peabody bankruptcy findings: [66]

These groups collectively are the heart and soul of climate denial,” said Kert Davies, founder of the Climate Investigation Center, who has spent 20 years tracking funding for climate denial. “It’s the broadest list I have seen of one company funding so many nodes in the denial machine.”

The company’s filings reveal funding for a range of organisations which have fought Barack Obama’s plans to cut greenhouse gas emissions, and denied the very existence of climate change. […]

Among Peabody’s beneficiaries, the Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change has insisted – wrongly – that carbon emissions are not a threat but “the elixir of life” while the American Legislative Exchange Council is trying to overturn Environmental Protection Agency rules cutting emissions from power plants. Meanwhile, Americans for Prosperity campaigns against carbon pricing. The Oklahoma chapter was on the list. […]

The breadth of the groups with financial ties to Peabody is extraordinary. Thinktanks, litigation groups, climate scientists, political organisations, dozens of organisations blocking action on climate all receiving funding from the coal industry,” said Nick Surgey, director of research for the Center for Media and Democracy.

We expected to see some denial money, but it looks like Peabody is the treasury for a very substantial part of the climate denial movement.”

Notable organizations listed in the initial documents include:

Notable individuals named in the initial documents include the following:

June, 2016

The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) was among organizations named in a Massachusetts subpoena looking for communications between ExxonMobil and organizations denying climate change, reports The Washington Times. [67]

Organizations named in the Massachusetts subpoena include the following: [67]

This latest inquiry by Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey is one in a series of investigations into what ExxonMobil knew about climate change and when, started by a coalition of attorneys general in the US. [68]

March 24, 2016

The Sierra Club Virginia Chapter and Center for Media and Democracy released a report detailing ALEC's attempts to delay action on climate change in Virginia. The report, AMERICAN LEGISLATIVE EXCHANGE COUNCIL (ALEC) EXPOSED: Corporate Polluters Undermining Clean Power in Virginia” (PDF) details how ALEC and its political allies have worked to combat state climate and clean energy policy. [58], [59]

The report focuses on ALEC's attempts to stop the Clean Power Plan, which set out to cut carbon emissions from power plants by 32% over 2005 levels. [58]

“I was pleased that during the 2016 General Assembly session we were able—at least so far—to fend off ALEC’s attempt to derail Virginia’s plan to curb emissions and comply with the Clean Power Plan,” said Virginia Delegate Rip Sullivan (D-48). “It is disappointing and troubling, though, that ALEC-inspired HB2 and SB21 passed the General Assembly–thankfully not by veto-proof majorities.  Virginia should be leading the way on clean energy, but sadly, we lag far behind.  I will continue to work hard to push for meaningful progress, moving Virginia toward a new clean energy economy.”[58]

Seth Heald, chair of the Seirra Club Virginia Chapter, notes that corporations “simply cannot be serious about reducing carbon pollution and addressing climate change while also supporting ALEC.” [58]

August, 2015

Royal Dutch Shell announced it would sever ties with ALEC due to the group's “continued denial of the science of climate change,” The Guardian reported.

Shell released a statement, saying that “Alec advocates for specific economic growth initiatives, but its stance on climate change is clearly inconsistent with our own.” [26]

In a previous interview with the Guardian in May, a Shell spokesman said: “We have long recognized both the importance of the climate challenge and the critical role energy has in determining quality of life for people across the world. As part of an ongoing review of memberships and affiliations, we will be letting our association with Alec lapse when the current contracted term ends early next year.” [27]

Shell isn't the first oil company to sever its ALEC ties. British Petroleum (BP) also joined the list of companies leaving ALEC's ranks, severing ties in May 2015.  Other companies to leave ALEC since 2014 include Google, Yahoo, Facebook, eBay and Yelp — all in the face of criticism over ALEC's climate change views.

BP’s exit came a few months after Occidental Petroleum (Oxy) announced it would depart from ALEC, and a year after ConocoPhillips, an American multinational energy corporation, did the same. Shell is the fourth to leave ALEC. [28]

July, 2015

At a July 2015 meeting in San Diego, ALEC’s energy committee — which includes Mr. Mike Duncan, the president of the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity (One of the nation's top coal lobbying groups) — enacted a model bill designed to directly support state attorneys general who legally challenge President Obama's climate change plan. 

The bill would allow states to create funds, which could be funded by corporate donations, to support legal challenges to the climate change rules. In early 2014, shortly after Obama announced regulations at the White House, West Virginia’s attorney general, Patrick Morrisey, announced that a group of at least 15 Republican state attorneys general were preparing a joint legal challenge to the proposal. 

Opposition at the time came from a group headed in part by Roger R. Martella Jr., a top environmental official in the George W. Bush administration, and Peter Glaser, a prominent Washington lobbyist, as reported by the New York Times. The NY Times describes ALEC as an “Important Ally in the effort.” [29]

May 13, 2015

The Center for Media and Democracy (CMD) and Common Cause filed an 18-page supplemental complaint to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) calling for the termination of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC)'s status as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and requesting civil and criminal charges be brought against ALEC. [43]

The complaint included more than 220 pages of evidence demonstrating how ALEC operates more like a “corporate bill mill” than it does a 501(c)(3) organization. It was an update to an original complaint that Common Cause made in 2012, as well as a 2013 supplement added by CMD and Common Cause. [44]

Among the exhibits cited in the supplement are examples of corporations themselves admitting that ALEC serves as a useful lobbying tool. Those on the list of corporations include Chevron, BP, ExxonMobil, Duke Energy and Peabody Energy.

The IRS supplemental complaint also points to a Minnesota Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board investigation published in February 2015 concluding that ALEC's “primary purpose” is to bring together legislators and lobbyists. [45]

May, 2015

As reported by the Center for Media and Democracy's (CMDPR Watch, ALEC's 2015 annual meeting was supported primarily by energy companies and their supporters. [30]

Of the 54 identified corporate sponsors, twenty-two are energy related firms, their front groups, or firms representing energy interests. 

On the agenda of ALEC's closed-door Energy, Environment, and Agriculture task force meeting is a model “Environmental Impact Litigation Act” that would allow companies to pay into a fund for the state to sue against environmental laws including the Clean Air Act. 

The CMD listed financial underwriters of the ALEC event as the following (*Asterisks indicating membership on ALEC’s corporate board of directors):

President's Level - $100,000

Chair's Level - $50,000

Vice Chair's Level - $25,000

Director's Level - $10,000

Trustee's Level - $5,000

  • Association of Bermuda Insurers & Reinsurers (ABIR)
  • Capelo Law Firm
  • Devon Energy
  • FedEx
  • The Graydon Group LLC
  • Bright House Media Strategies
  • Piedmont Natural Gas
  • Renovate America
  • Sunovion Pharmaceuticals
  • Tenaska Capital Management
  • Texas Alliance of Energy Producers
  • Texas Cable Association
  • Texas Medical Association
  • Texas Association of Builders
  • Texas Business Roundtable
  • Texas Oil and Gas Association (TXOGA)
  • Texans for Lawsuit Reform
  • The Schlueter Group
  • Texas Strategy Group
  • Texas Star Alliance Energy Solutions

April, 2015

Shortly after the loss of a number of high-profile sponsors, ALEC threatened legal action against groups that had accused it of denying climate change. 

Attorneys for ALEC sent letters to Common Cause and the League of Conservation Voters asking them to immediately “cease making false statements” and “remove all false or misleading material” suggesting that ALEC does not believe in global warming, reports The Washington Post.  [31]

While ALEC claims not to deny climate change, and says they will be making efforts to be more transparent and welcoming to divergent views, environmental groups still question the group's commitment:

“We don’t think ALEC or organizations like it are done attacking progress on climate change,” said Kert Davies, an environmental activist running the nonprofit Climate Investigations Center. “It is hard to imagine these organizations turning a corner and suddenly being open to an honest discussion of real environmental policy.”

March, 2014

The Center for Media and Democracy's (CMD) obtained an internal tracking document from the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), dated March 2014 (See .xls spreadsheet), that revealed ALEC tracking 131 bills that “amongst other things, roll back state renewable energy standards, increase costs for American households with solar, hype the Keystone XL pipeline, push back on proposed EPA coal regulations that protect human health, and create industry-friendly fracking rules despite growing national and international concerns about fracking.” [52]

June, 2013

The Center for Media and Democracy's (CMDPR Watch reports that the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) adopted a “model” bill that would fight against regional low-carbon fuel standards (LCFS) in the states. [51]

CMD reports that the model bill, called “Restrictions on Participation in Low-Carbon Fuel Standards Programs,” was sponsored at a November, 2012 ALEC conference in Washington by Steve Higley, a lobbyist from the U.S.-based industry group American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM). AFPM includes members from both Koch Industries and ExxonMobil, who are also represented on ALEC's Private Enterprise Advisory Council. 

April, 2013

Huffington Post reports how Chevron and the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) worked together to oppose the 1973 Endangered Species Act, and its supposed challenges to energy developers. [53]

Chevron sponsored a workshop as part of ALEC's policy summit in Washington, D.C. that covered how the law “often negatively impacts and stifles energy development of all kinds,” according to a planning document (PDF).

July 13, 2011

The Center for Media Democracy (CMD) and The Nation published a leaked file that revealed over 800 examples of ALEC's model legislation. The Nation attributes the leak to Aliya Rahman, an Ohio-based activist who helped organize protests at ALEC’s Spring Task Force meeting in Cincinnati. [32]

CMD now hosts the website “ALEC Exposed” which houses examples of ALEC's model legislation previously unavailable to the public. The website also provides tools to track politicians, corporations, and bills with ties to ALEC

The Nation devoted a special edition of their magazine to the breaking story, and included the following articles published in the August 1-8 edition of the magazine, and online on July 12, 2011:

Around the same time, the Los Angeles Times reported that government watchdog Common Cause was challenging ALEC's nonprofit status, arguing “it spends most of its resources lobbying, in violation of the rules governing nonprofit organizations.” [33]

ALEC responded with accusations that “Common Cause has distorted the facts, concealed critical details, and apparently attempted to mislead the news media and the public.” [34]

OpenSecrets.org reports that the 23 companies represented on ALEC's private enterprise board spent large amounts lobbying the government on health and environmental measures such as bills that would block the EPA from regulating greenhouse gas emissions. [35]

June, 2011

ALEC orchestrated opposition against EPA regulations on greenhouse gasses with their model legislation, “Resolution in Opposition to EPA's Plan to Regulate Greenhouse Gases Under the Clean Air Act.”

The model legislation opposes “EPA's endangerment finding and any regulation of greenhouse gases, citing the massive economic burden that would result and the global nature of climate emissions.”

ALEC said it would “continue to support the efforts of state legislatures in resisting the EPA’s regulatory agenda” and “urges Congress to take the concerns of these states seriously and stop this regulatory train wreck in order to avoid the enormous negative impacts the EPA’s overreaching regulations will have.” [36]

ALEC also offers a document titled “EPA’s Regulatory Train Wreck: Strategies for State Legislators” that “outlines best practices for state legislators (including following the many states that are considering resolutions in 2011 to call for Congress to slow and stop this regulatory onslaught [by the EPA]).”

ALEC has published materials downplaying the risks of global warming before, including “Climate Change Overview for State Legislators” (PDF) written by Daniel Simmons, previously associated with the Mercatus Institute (an organization founded and funded by Koch Industries).  

September, 2010

Clint Woods of ALEC said that the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) and other cap-and-trade greenhouse gas reduction plans would become the “new battlefield” after federal climate legislation fell through. [37]

April 23, 2010

ALEC Drafted a resolution (PDF) resisting the EPA's efforts to classify coal ash as a hazardous material. [38]

Coal ash contains known neurotoxins and carcinogens such as arsenic, lead, and mercury. [39]

2009

ALEC drafted a resolution (PDF) designed to limit federal oversight of hydraulic fracturing for natural gas. [40]

January, 2004

ALEC launched opposition to “Son of Kyoto” legislation across the country.

“States should reject every form of Kyoto legislation for the very same reasons as our leaders in Washington, D.C.,” said Alexandra Liddy Bourne. “The Kyoto Protocol is just another highly regressive energy tax on America's working families, with no measurable benefit to environmental or human health.”  [9]

1998

ALEC was mentioned in a leaked 1998 ”Global Climate Science Communications Action Plan” by the American Petroleum Institute (API). As reported by the Climate Investigations Center, ALEC was named as a “Potential fund allocator” along with the Committee for a Construcive Tomorrow (CFACT), Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI), Frontiers of Freedom (FoF), and the Marshall Institute. [82], [83]

According to the plan, “victory will be achieved when”: [82]

  • Average citizens “understand” (recognize) uncertainties in climate science; recognition of uncertainties becomes part of the “conventional wisdom”
  • Media “understands” (recognizes) uncertainties in climate science
  • Media coverage reflects balance on climate science and recognition of the validity of viewpoints that challenge the current “conventional wisdom”
  • Industry senior leadership understands uncertainties in climate science, making them stronger ambassadors to those who shape climate policy
  • Those promoting the Kyoto treaty on the basis of extant science appear to be out of touch with reality.”

Under the heading “Climate Reality,” the document continues:

Unless 'climate change' becomes a non-issue, meaning that the Kyoto proposal is defeated and there are no further initiatives to thwart the threat of climate change, there may be do moment when we can declare victory for our efforts. It will be necessary to establish measurements for the science effort to track progress toward achieving the goal and strategic success.” [82]

American Legislative Exchange Council Contact & Location

As of May, 2016, ALEC's listed contact address and phone number were as follows: [62]

2900 Crystal Drive, 6th Floor
Arlington, VA 22202
Phone: 703-373-0933
Fax: 703-373-0927

Related Organizations

SourceWatch maintains a full list of organizations working behind-the-scenes with ALEC.

Resources

  1. What is ALEC?ALECExposed.org. Archived August 6, 2015.

  2. Mission,” American Legislative Exchange Council. Archived July 31, 2015.

  3. Task Forces,” ALEC. Archived August 6, 2015.

  4. American Legislative Exchange Council,” Conservative Transparency. Archived August 6, 2015.

  5. Molly Jackman. “ALEC’s Influence over Lawmaking in State Legislatures,” Brookings Institution, December 6, 2013. Archived August 6, 2015.

  6. Anne Landman. “ALEC and the Tobacco Industry,” PR Watch, July 15, 2011. Archived August 6, 2015.

  7. Position Statement on Renewables and Climate Change,” ALEC. Archived August 7, 2015. 

  8. ALEC Energy Principles” (PDF), Center for Media and Democracy. Archived August 6, 2015.

  9. (Press Release) “'Sons-of-Kyoto' Legislation: States React to the Myth of Global Warming,” US Newswire, January 21, 2004. Archived March 12, 2004.

  10. Brian Fung. “Google: We’re parting with the climate change skeptics at ALEC,” The Washington Post. September 22, 2014.

  11. Neela Banerjee. “What's Behind ALEC's Denial That It Denies Climate Change?“ Inside Climate News. April 14, 2015. Archived August 6, 2015.

  12. ExxonSecrets Factsheet: ALEC - American Legislative Exchange Council, ALEC. Accessed April 12, 2016.

  13. American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) - Koch Industries Climate Denial Front Group,” Greenpeace USA. Archived March 13, 2017. Archive.is URL:  https://archive.is/OhKXN

  14. Board of Directors,” ALEC. Archived Aug 7, 2015.

  15. Civil Justice,” American Legislative Exchange Council. Archived December, 2011.

  16. Board of Scholars,” ALEC. Archived August 1, 2015.

  17. Private Enterprise Advisory Council,” ALEC. Archived August 9, 2015.

  18. Nick Surgey. “Peabody Energy Lobbyist Schools Legislators on Getting More ALEC Travel Perks,” PR Watch, March 5, 2014. Archived August 9, 2015.

  19. Meet Our Staff,” ALEC. Archived August 9, 2015.

  20. American Legislative Exchange Council, Lisa Nelson, organizational biography (originally from Ulysses Consulting, Inc.). Archived August 9, 2015.

  21. Nora Chokshi. “ALEC, the free-market group liberals love to hate, gets a new boss,” July 8, 2014. Washington Post, July 8, 2014.

  22. Board of Directors,” ALEC. Archived January 5, 2012.

  23. Board of Scholars,” American Legislative Exchange Council. Archived January, 2012.

  24. Meet Our Staff,” American Legislative Exchange Council. Archived January, 2012.

  25. Private Enterprise Board,” American Legislative Exchange Council. Accessed January, 2012.

  26. Karl Mathieson and Ed Pilkington. “Royal Dutch Shell cuts ties with Alec over rightwing group's climate denial,” The Guardian, August 7, 2015. Archived August 9, 2015.

  27. Terry Macalister and Damian Carrington. “Shell boss endorses warnings about fossil fuels and climate change,” The Guardian, May 22, 2015.

  28. Amy Westervelt. “BP joins list of companies fleeing Alec,” The Guardian, March 23, 2015.

  29. Coral Davenport and Julie Hirschfeld Davis. “Move to Fight Obama’s Climate Plan Started Early,” The New York Times, August 3, 2015.

  30. Nick Surgey. “ALEC Conference Funding Dominated by Big Polluters,” PR Watch, July 23, 2015. Archived August 10, 2015.

  31. Tom Hamburger, Joby Warrick, and Chris Mooney. “This conservative group is tired of being accused of climate denial — and is fighting back,” The Washington Post, April 5, 2015.

  32. John Nichols. “ALEC Exposed,” The Nation,  July 12, 2011. Archived August 9, 2015.

  33. Tom Hamburger and Neela Banerjee. “State legislative bills raise conservative group's profile,” Los Angeles Times, July 13, 2011. Archived August 9, 2015.

  34. ALEC Responds to Deceptive Common Cause Report,” American Legislative Exchange Council. Archived January 4, 2012.

  35. Brad Hooker. “Corporations Represented on ALEC's Private Enterprise Board Are Big Spenders in Washington,” OpenSecrets (blog), September 12, 2011. Archived August 9, 2015.

  36. ALEC State Legislators Push Back EPA’s Onslaught of Regulations: ALEC’S EPA Regulatory Train Wreck proving to be successful,” (Press Release) American Legislative Exchange Council, June 14, 2011. Archived January 16, 2012.

  37. Darren Samuelsohn. “States are climate battlegrounds,” Politico, September 15, 2010. Archived August 9, 2015.

  38. “Resolution to Retain State Authority over Coal Ash as Non-Hazardous Waste” (PDF), ALEC Exposed.

  39. Coal Ash: Blatantly and Egregiously Hazardous,” PolluterWatch, November 18, 2010.

  40. “Resolution to Retain State Authority over Hydraulic Facturing” (PDF), ALEX Exposed.

  41. Globalwarming.org, archived August 9, 2015.

  42. ALEC,”,” State Policy Network. Archived September 8, 2017. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/pla8m.

  43. Steve Horn. “Groups File IRS Complaint Alleging ALEC is a Lobbying Vehicle, Not a Charity,” DeSmogBlog, May 13, 2015.

  44. Supplemental Complaint 2015,” Common Cause. Accessed October 30, 2015.

  45. STATE OF MINNESOTA CAMPAIGN FINANCE AND PUBLIC DISCLOSURE BOARD: Findings of Fact, Conclusions of Law, and Order In the Matter of the Complaint of Common Cause Minnesota Regarding the American Legislative Exchange Council” (PDF), retrieved from CommonCause.org.

  46. Watch This Atlanta TV Station Expose ALEC's Influence On Local Legislators,” Media Matters, May 22, 2015.

  47. Brendan Keefe and Media King. “Legislators and corporate lobbyists meet in secret at Georgia resort,” WXIA-TV Atlanta, June 2, 2015.

  48. Their Speakers,” alecclimatechangedenial.org. Archived October 30, 2015.

  49. “Bill Moyers: United States of ALEC — A Viewers Guide,” PR Watch, June 24, 2015.

  50. United States of ALEC — A Follow-Up,” Moyers & Company, June 21, 2013.

  51. Nick Surgey. “ALEC Tours Tar Sands, Works with Industry Groups to Block Low-Carbon Fuel Standards,” PR Watch, June 17, 2013. Archived October 31, 2015.

  52. Nick Surgey. “Revealed: ALEC’s 2014 Attacks on the Environment,” PR Watch, April 23, 2014. Archived October 30, 2015.

  53. Kate Sheppard. “Chevron And ALEC Take On The Big, Bad Lesser Prairie Chicken,” Huffington Post, April 12, 2014.

  54. Brendan Fischer. “Dirty Hands: 77 ALEC Bills in 2013 Advance a Big Oil, Big Ag Agenda,” PR Watch, August 1, 2014. Archived October 31, 2015. 

  55. After Unprecedented Claim of Legislative Immunity, Vukmir Releases ALEC Records, Pays Damages,” PR Watch, March 28, 2014.

  56. Rebekah Wilce. “Some ALEC Funders Flee, but Koch, Big Tobacco, and PhRMA Remain Loyalists,” PR Watch, August 1, 2014. Archived October 31, 2015. 

  57. American Legislative Exchange Council,” (Site Search), performed April 12, 2016. 

  58. (Press Release). “New Report Reveals the Dangerous Influence of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) on Climate Policy in Virginia,” eNews Park Forest, March 24, 2016. Archived April 12, 2016.

  59. ALEC EXPOSED: Corporate Polluters Undermining Clean Power in Virginia” (PDF), Sierra Club, VA Chapter and Center for Media and Democracy. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmogBlog.

  60. Elliott Negin. “Coal Companies’ Secret Funding of Climate Science Denial Exposed,” Huffington Post, April 12, 2016. Archived April 12, 2016.

  61. “Corporations that Have Cut Ties to ALEC,” Sourcewatch. Accessed April 12, 2016.

  62.  “Contact,” American Legislative Exchange Council. Archived May 20, 2016. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmogBlog.

  63. Nick Surgey. “Peabody Coal Bankruptcy Reveals Climate Denial Network Funding,” PRWatch, June 13, 2016. Archived June 20, 2016.

  64. In re: Peabody Energy Corporation, et al. Debtors,” United States Bankruptcy Court Eastern District of Missouri Eastern Division,  Case 16-42529, May 27, 2016. Retrieved from DocumentCloud.

  65. Farron Cousins. “Court Documents Show Coal Giant Peabody Energy Funded Dozens Of Climate Denial Groups,” DeSmogBlog, June 13, 2016.

  66. Suzanne Goldenberg and Helena Bengtsson. “Biggest US coal company funded dozens of groups questioning climate change,” The Guardian, June 13, 2016. Archived June 20, 2016.

  67. Valerie Richardson. “Exxon fights Mass. AG’s ‘political’ probe into climate change dissent,” The Washington Times, June 15, 2016. Archived June 24, 2016.

  68. Ben Jervey. “State Investigations Into What Exxon Knew Double, and Exxon Gets Defensive,” Desmog, April 1, 2016.

  69. Leadership,” American Legislative Exchange Council. Archived July 6, 2016. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmogBlog.

  70. ALEC Staff,” American Legislative Exchange Council. Archived July 6, 2016. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmogBlog.

  71. Jim Lakely. “#WebOfDenial Push by Senate Dems Exposes Their Hatred of Free Speech,” Somewhat Reasonable (Heartland Institute Blog), July 12, 2016. Archived July 14, 2016.

  72. Brendan Demelle. “Senators Launch Resolution, Speech Blitz Calling Out #WebOfDenial Blocking Climate Action,” DeSmog, July 11, 2016.

  73. Coalition Letter to Senate Web of Denial Resolution (PDF). Retrieved from the Heartland Institute. Archived .pdf on file at DeSMogBlog.

  74. Cindy Baxter. “Front Groups Attacking #WebofDenial Senate Action Took Over $92M in Dark, Dirty Money,” Desmog, July 14, 2016. Originally posted at Climate Investigations Center.

  75. CPAC 2017 Sponsors,” cpac.conservative.org. Archived March 6, 2017. Archive.is URLhttps://archive.is/SKFRU

  76. ALEC ENERGY PRINCIPLES,” ALEC. Archived September 7, 2017. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/iWJgz

  77. About ALEC,” American Legislative Exchange Council. Archived September 9, 2017. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/DVoEv

  78. ALEC Corporations,” SourceWatch. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/1UBUs

  79. Mary Bottari. “Bradley Foundation Funnels Millions to State Policy Network Groups,” PR Watch, September 5, 2017. Archived September 11, 2017. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/DJFiU

  80. Patricia Sullivan. “Paul Weyrich; created intellectual framework for conservatives,” Boston Globe, December 19, 2008.

  81. Will Potter. Green Is the New Red: An Insider's Account of a Social Movement Under Siege. City Lights Book (2011).

  82. “Global Climate Science Communications Action Plan” (PDF), April 3, 1998. PDF archived at DeSmog.

  83. Kert Davies. “ALEC Hates the Climate,” Climate Investigations Center, February 20, 2014. Archived September 12, 2017. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/VkTcd

  84. History,ALEC. Archived March 11, 2015. Archive.is URLhttps://archive.is/LXcqm

  85. Connor Gibson. “ALEC in Indianapolis: ExxonMobil and the #WebOfDenial,” Greenpeace, July 29, 2016. Archived September 13, 2017. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/8qasi

  86. Nick Surgey. “EXXONMOBIL TOP SPONSOR AT ALEC ANNUAL MEETING,” ExposedbyCMD, July 27, 2016. Archived September 13, 2017. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/dLXjo

  87. ALEC's Corporate Board Leads…in Federal Violations,” PR Watch, September 21, 2017. Archived September 30, 2017. Archive.is URLhttp://archive.is/hXaCc

  88. Mary Bottari and David Armiak. “TRUMP TEAM, ALEC, KOCH INDUSTRIES DEBATE GERRYMANDERING THE U.S. SENATE IN DENVER,” ExposedbyCMD, July 17, 2017. Archived September 30, 2017. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/XtCj7

  89. “Dear Mr. President” (PDF) retrieved from the Heartland Institute. Archived .pdf file at DeSmog. 

  90. Senator Whitehouse. “Time to wake up: Web of Deceit” April 23, 2018. Archive.is URLhttps://archive.li/HzIsa

  91. Exxon Quits Koch-Backed Business Group After Climate Change Row,” Bloomberg, July 12, 2018. Archived July 16, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.fo/bRF7d

  92. Koch-Backed Business Group Splinters in Climate-Change Dispute,” Bloomberg, December 8, 2017. Archived July 16, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.fo/xGgWu

  93. 41 Conservative Groups Support Scalise/McKinley Anti-Carbon Tax Resolution,” Americans for Tax Reform, July 18, 2018. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmog.

  94. Nick Sobczyk. “House voting on anti-carbon-tax measure: 'Pass the popcorn',” E&E News, July 16, 2018. Archived Aug 2, 2018. Archive.is URL: https://archive.fo/aTP8h

  95. Teaching opportunities from House Concurrent Resolution 119 (H.Con.Res.119)” (PDF), Citizens' Climate Lobby, April 30, 2018.

Other Resources

Organizations: